Thief

by Owen McLeod

Every Thursday, on his way to therapy,
he drives past the house of the woman
he’s having an affair with. What interests
his therapist isn’t the sin, which she views
as a symptom, but the root. So they dig,
or seem to, and today he talks about his wife—
how, before they take a trip, she makes him
connect those timers to lamps in certain rooms,
and how much this annoys him, even though
it didn’t used to. As if their belongings were
of value. As if an automatic light might stop
an addict from breaking in.
As if the thief,
awake beside her, had not already come and gone.


Owen McLeod’s first book of poems, Dream Kitchen, won the 2018 Vassar Miller Prize in Poetry. His work has found homes in New England Review, Ploughshares, FIELD, The Southern Review, and many other publications.

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